And the reading goes on, and on, and on…I’m so glad I like to read.
This week I read three more article by Hyaeweol Choi, two of which I believe are significant in my research area.
In this article Hyaeweol Choi critiques three articles written about Christian women in East Asia. She argues that the thread that runs through all of the pieces is the idea that “religious encounters are examples of “transnational” encounters”. (68) Religion has played a large role in shaping transnational encounters and produced hybridized religions in encountered territories.
A couple of important ideas from the article she critiques include:
* One author argues that when someone chooses a “new” religion like Christianity, they do so more from an affinity to the differences to the indigenous religion rather than similarities.
* Choi points out that new research is showing some Confucian women kept close ties with their natal family and some women were registered as heads of households.
The Second article was:
Choi explores the first years of education work for girls in Korea. According to Choi, American women missionary began slowly – adapting the curriculum to Korean expectations. It was only after they earned the trust of Koreans that they began to advocate for a change in the status as well as the traditional customs pertaining to the role of Korean women.
Also, here is another book on missionary encounters…
In this work, Yannakakis uncovers the lack of commensurability exercised by Dominican missionary priests in their work in the Oaxaca region of Mexico. Instead of looking for some kind of commensurability or grounds for mediation, the Dominican’s first actions were often violent in nature and were met with violence in return. The Dominicans did not attempt any kind of cross-cultural understanding with villagers. In reality, the Dominicans often reacted violently to perceived idol worship in Oaxaca. After the Cajonos Rebellion, a previously closed Prison of Perpetual Idolatry was reopened under Vargas’s Dominican Superior, Bishop Maldonado. Maldonado also instituted other reforms, including reforms that placed secular clergy in the region. This secular clergy made no attempt to learn the native language. And in a further push away from native language acquisition, in 1769, the archbishop of Mexico in a letter to the Council of the Indies argued for the imposition of a Spanish only policy in all the regions of Mexico. These actions do not point towards attempts at commensurability. They did not append themselves to the group and develop a “nearness” that would help bridge understanding.